Behind the scenes of the Djokovic controversy: the five exceptions that allow you to play the Australian Open without getting vaccinated

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Novak Djokovic won the last three Australian Opens (Reuters)
Novak Djokovic won the last three Australian Opens (Reuters)

This Tuesday it was confirmed that Novak Djokovic You can participate in the Australian Open despite not having received the coronavirus vaccine. After months of debate on the situation of the number 1 tennis player in the world ranking, the tournament organizers confirmed that the Serbian received a medical exemption that allows him to play the first Grand Slam of 2022.

This news generated controversy since many understood this permission as a privilege towards one of the best players of all time and recalled other cases, such as that of Vikhlyantseva was born, who in December reported that he will not be able to participate in the contest because, despite being inoculated, Sputink has not yet been recognized by the Australian authorities.

Despite the criticism, reality shows that the Australian Government Department of Health has long had a list of reasons for obtaining a non-vaccination permit that anyone traveling to the country can adhere to. They were prepared by the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (ATAGI) and each submission is reviewed by a panel of experts who decide whether or not the applicant meets the requirements.

Djokovic managed to get medical exemption to play the Australian Open (Reuters)
Djokovic managed to get medical exemption to play the Australian Open (Reuters)

The five exceptions

For a COVID-19 mRNA vaccine (Pfizer):

Inflammatory heart disease in the past 3 months, for example, myocarditis or pericarditis; acute rheumatic fever or acute rheumatic heart disease (that is, with inflammation of the myocardium); or acute decompensated heart failure-

For all other COVID-19 vaccines:

-Acute serious medical condition (for example, undergoing major surgery or being admitted to hospital for a serious illness). These are usually time-limited conditions (or medical treatment for them is time-limited).

PCR-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection, in which vaccination can be postponed for up to 6 months after infection. Vaccination should be postponed for 90 days in people who have received anti-SARS-CoV-2 monoclonal antibody or convalescent plasma therapy.

Any serious adverse event attributed to a previous dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, with no other identified cause and with no acceptable alternative vaccine available. For example, a person under the age of 60, contraindicated to receive the Pfizer vaccine and in whom the risks do not outweigh the benefits of receiving the AstraZeneca vaccine, is eligible for an exemption.

If the vaccinated person represents a risk to themselves or to others during the vaccination process, can guarantee a temporary exemption from the vaccine. This can include a variety of people with underlying developmental or mental health disorders, but with non-drug conditions in mind. Interventions can safely facilitate vaccination for many people with behavioral problems.

Djokovic will seek to continue making history in Australia (Reuters)
Djokovic will seek to continue making history in Australia (Reuters)

Although it is not publicly known which of these reasons he used Djokovic To obtain the medical exemption, it should be noted that your application was reviewed by two panels of physicians. One, made up of specialists who are part of the ATAGI and another, an Independent Medical Exemption Review Committee appointed by the Victoria Department of Health.

For its part, Tennis Australia He explained that the process included the suppression of personal information to ensure the privacy of all complainants. The tournament director, Craig Tiley, said that “fair and independent protocols were established to evaluater the requests for medical exemptions that will allow us to ensure that the Australian Open 2022 is safe and fun for everyone. ” “The key to this process was that the decisions were made by independent medical experts and that each applicant received due consideration,” added Tiley.

Djokovic, which was left with the last three Opens of Australia, has won nine of his 20 majors in Australia. Share the ATP title record with Roger Federer Y Rafael Nadal, for which it could overcome them if it is enshrined in the oceanic contest that will take place from January 17 to 30.

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